Karene Biggs, Principal

Principal's Welcome

"Inspiring young women who are successful learners and act with integrity."

Palmerston North Girls’ High School provides an outstanding education for young women from Palmerston North, the wider Manawatu region and a range of overseas countries. We are committed to providing a safe and supportive environment that enables students to become independent, curious learners and future problem solvers. We maintain high standards of achievement and have high expectations of behaviour. Our results at all levels are significantly outstanding and higher than national averages.

Our school provides a wide curriculum that includes a full range of subjects at all levels with an expectation that students will also be involved in extracurricular sporting, artistic and/or cultural activities. In addition, our school provides opportunities for students to be involved in extension opportunities to further their knowledge and skills. Girls at all levels are encouraged to take up leadership roles. These opportunities help them develop greater self-confidence and become healthy risk takers within our supportive environment. Many of our students also gain significant scholarships to support further study at tertiary institutions.

We invite you to take the opportunities we offer to visit our school and consider how we may form a learning partnership to achieve the best outcomes for your daughter's future.

Karene Biggs

Study Options

Palmerston North Girls’ High School has a very high academic record and successfully prepares its students to enter university. Students can select from a wide range of subjects that the school offers in accordance with the New Zealand curriculum for all year levels including English, Mathematics, the Sciences, Health and Physical Education, Technology, the Arts, and Languages, with additional subjects for senior students.

We Care

Our small class size of 25 – 30 allows personalized education and encourages students to support each other in achieving their educational goals. Buddies and peer tutoring are available for all students. Our dedicated team at the International Office is committed to offering pastoral and academic support to our international students. We are contactable 24/7 in case of emergencies.

School ERO Report

You can read the 2018 Education Review Office report on PNGHS here:

Unless you are living with your parents or approved designated caregivers, you will be placed with one of our carefully selected and managed host families or homestays. The families have been vetted by the New Zealand Police as well as gone through a thorough check by the school. Many of our host families have done this before, while some are new. What they all have in common is an interest in other cultures and a desire to share their family and everyday life by opening their home to you.

Homestay family holiday

A host family plays a central role in your year(s) at high school. They look after you, provide you with your own furnished room and three meals a day. They will do everything possible to help you feel part of the family and you will certainly spend a lot of time with them during your stay. You may exchange traditional recipes, prepare meals together, gather around the dinner table every evening, go to the cinema together or make weekend trips. You will take part in all activities, meet their friends and celebrate holidays with them. It is this everyday life that allows you to experience the real New Zealand and its culture.

Benefits of Homestay

  • Improve competency of the English language
  • Learn the New Zealand “Kiwi” way of life
  • Explore different cultures and traditions
  • Safe and comfortable home environment
  • Individual care, guidance and support
  • Develop quality and life long relationships
  • Join in family activities and trips
  • 24/7 support from PNGHS International Department

Become a homestay

Each year, we celebrate the diversity at Palmerston North Girls’ High School by admitting a number of international students. For many of them, homestay is the first impression of New Zealand. Likewise, hosting an international student is a great way to learn about another culture. At Palmerston North Girls’ High School, we welcome families willing to open up their homes to our students and we provide dedicated support to our families to ensure a positive experience for everyone.

Host families will receive weekly homestay fee payment for each international student (paid monthly). If you wish to become a homestay family for Palmerston North Girls’ High School, please read our Homestay Guidelines to ensure you are able to meet the requirements. Applications can then be made by filling out the Homestay Application Form and contacting our Homestay Manager, Jill Nash. A Police Vetting Form must also be completed for every adult (aged 18 and over) living in the household.

Living in a Homestay

At Palmerston North Girls' High School, we believe that just as important as having world-class education; international students must have a safe and nurturing family environment to live in where they will receive the care and support that they need to settle successfully into a new culture and educational system.

Our Homestay Manager works tirelessly to ensure a positive and successful experience for all our International Students.

Breakfast at a homestay